Monthly Archives: October 2016


 Black Mirror (see below)






“Hello, Mike Lindell!

“I have been seeing your commercial for ‘My Pillow.’ In fact, I have probably seen your commercial 5,433 times this year. Unfortunately, your irritating, omnipresent commercial is causing me to lose sleep. I tried counting sheep, but the fluffy white critters kept turning into – you guessed it – Your Pillows.

“Like you, I call Minnesota my home state. We should get together sometime. I believe I will find out your home address, come to your house in the middle of the night, and stuff Your Bleeping Pillow right up Your Bleeping Ass — sleep on that!”








This can’t possibly be true … can it?




TV Tidbits Rectify


Rectify, now in its final season, is one of those shows that’s a tough sell to potential viewers. I go over the story’s plot in my head and I put myself to sleep.  Recapping individual scenes doesn’t cut it. The tone is relentlessly downbeat.

Yet it’s arguably the best drama on TV. If you haven’t seen it, then you are like almost everyone else. But there’s always Netflix, if you’d like to catch up. Black Mirror


Speaking of Netflix, Black Mirror is back with six new episodes. Like Rectify, Black Mirror is one of the best shows on television. But it’s also given me a renewed appreciation for Rod Serling and his Twilight Zone, a series Black Mirror is often compared to.

Since 2011, Mirror creator Charlie Brooker has given the world a whopping … 13 episodes. Back in the day, as they say, Serling would crank out that many shows in just half a season.




Texas cheerleader Morgan Willett keeps giving (some of) us reasons to check in at the Big Brother house:


.                                  willetta     willettb


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Seems so obvious. I don’t know why it takes science so long to figure these things out.






Brooke Baldwin didn’t know if Congress has term limits. And I used to think she was one of those sexy smart girls.






Enough politics. Let’s check in with the Big Brother hamsters, who have no idea what’s going on in the world outside of their pretty little heads in their smelly little house.




Twenty-four-year-old Shelby Stockton, above left, and 22-year-old Morgan Willett, above right, formed an alliance called “The Ball Smashers.” Shelby and Morgan also supply viewers with some memorable quotes:


Shelby:  “That’s my problem – I like small dicks, but really tall guys.”




In her Diary Room session shown above, it looks as though Morgan does not share Shelby’s taste in male organs. Morgan also told viewers, “I like balls.”


Below, Morgan moons the sun while tanning with fellow “Ball Smasher” Whitney Hogg.




.                    morgan    morgan-2


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Lucky astronaut. I’m guessing there are about 300 million Americans who would prefer to watch this election from her vantage point.




The Good News:  Looks like we’re about to tell Trump he’s fired – just as soon as Human Resources gets done with him.


The Bad News:  We will be crowning a Queen Hillary for the next four years.


The Really Bad News:  Beginning November 9, we’ll have to listen to the media gloat.


The Silver Lining:  Soon after November 9, the media will realize it destroyed one monster only to create another.




.   berman  costello


The older he gets, the more ESPN’s Chris Berman reminds me of Lou Costello.








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. trump-1  trump-2 trump-3 trump-4


Oooohhh, this is bad

I’m sure Hillary has never said anything vulgar about men when she was engaged in private conversation.

And my heart goes out to all of the TV pundits and politicians who are “horrified” by Donald Trump’s assault on basic human decency. I’m certain that they, too, have never uttered vulgarities about the opposite sex.


Listen, I’m not voting for Trump for a whole host of reasons. But if I did decide to support him, it would be a reaction to the frenzy of our national media. Trump might be unbalanced, but the press has become unprofessional and unhinged in its quest to bring him down — that’s the voters’ job.




TV Tidbits


I’ve only seen two or three episodes of each new show on this list, so it’s possible they could improve (or get worse) during their runs, but here are my initial impressions:




Westworld (HBO) – It’s brainy science-fiction about robots and artificial intelligence, but it doesn’t seem to add much to what we already learned from HAL nearly 50 years ago in 2001: A Space Odyssey. The pilot episode was dreary and dull.  Early grade: C+






Timeless (NBC) – Have you seen Rectify? Of course you haven’t; no one has. But it’s a fine drama and Abigail Spencer is superb in it. I guess she wanted something lighter that people would actually watch when she signed up for this fluffy and forgettable show.  Early grade: C






This Is Us (NBC) – Just shoot me now.  Early grade: F






The Good Place (NBC) – If you are charmed by Kristen Bell you will likely be charmed by this comedy. I’m guessing that Bell substituting “shirt” for “shit,” “fudge” for “fuck,” etc., will eventually stop sounding cute.  Early grade: C+






Designated Survivor (ABC) – It had an explosive premiere, but as Kiefer Sutherland’s president grows more saintly, the show grows more preachy.  Early grade: C+






Versailles (Ovation) – Sex and sin in the court of Louis XIV. Don’t expect Downton Abbey – this is much naughtier – but it’s juicy soap opera.  Ovation might have cut some of the steamier sex scenes for puritanical American eyes – if so, not a good thing.  Early grade: B  






The Exorcist (Fox) — The good news: The end of the first episode had one of the best gut-punches I’ve seen on a TV series. The bad news: Well, it’s not really bad news. It’s just that the show seems to be settling into middling chills.  Early grade: B



Returning Shows


Ash vs. Evil Dead (Starz) – I enjoyed the first season, but I’m not sure if there’s enough meat on the bones of this horror-comedy to sustain another year.  Grade: B


American Horror Story (FX) and Scream Queens (Fox) – I’m thinking Ryan Murphy has too much on his plate. Instead of creating and supervising every show on the Fox/FX schedule, he ought to just concentrate on a single good one.  Grades: AHS C+  SQ C




“If I had a show, I would have gone right after him.” — David Letterman on Trump


Yes, because Letterman would never dream of using his star power to take advantage of young women. Just ask his interns.



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Gringo Gringo


If you think selecting a president this year is akin to choosing between having a root canal or a colonoscopy, it could be worse. We could be stuck with Libertarian candidate John McAfee, the software mogul who wound up accused of rape and orchestrating not one but two murders in Belize. Documentarian Nanette Burstein interviewed McAfee’s hired thugs, his victims, and his teenage “girlfriends” who observed as he turned one part of Central America into his own Heart of Darkness.  

It’s hard to say which is more stomach-turning: the way McAfee exploited poor Belizeans, or the way America’s fawning business and tech communities have welcomed him back to the U.S.A.  Release: 2016  Grade: B+




Amanda Knox Knox


Amanda Knox is not a particularly likeable woman – but that doesn’t necessarily make her a murderer. After watching Netflix’s new documentary about the Seattle woman’s trials and tribulations in the Italian justice system, I remain as clueless as ever to her guilt or innocence in the death of roommate Meredith Kercher. But I do know this: The movie reaffirms my belief that I never want to find myself on trial in Italy – especially with flamboyant, egotistical prosecutor Giuliano Mignini running the show. Release: 2016  Grade: B+




Rams Rams


Two Icelandic farmers – feuding brothers who haven’t spoken to each other in 40 years – find their livelihoods threatened when disease strikes their beloved sheep stock. Rams is one of those “little” films in which nothing much seems to happen – but it’s so unusual that it could stay with you for a long time.  Release: 2015  Grade: B


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by Gaston Leroux Yellow Room


In her 1963 book The Clocks, mystery queen Agatha Christie gives a shout-out to this classic “locked room” novel, published in 1908 by the Frenchman Gaston Leroux. This is interesting because Leroux and Yellow Room protagonist Joseph Rouletabille were clearly on Christie’s mind when she created her most indelible character: the great detective Hercule Poirot.

Other than age and occupation, Christie’s Poirot and Leroux’s young hero have a lot in common. (Rouletabille is an 18-year-old journalist.)  Like Poirot, Rouletabille is brilliant, underestimated by nearly everyone, and takes an almost malicious delight in withholding crucial information from his clueless associate, who also serves as the story’s narrator. At one point, the eccentric Rouletabille even refers to his little grey cells – although not in precisely those words.

As for the mystery itself, Yellow Room features other Christie-like qualities: suspects who harbor secrets, dark doings at an isolated estate, and disguise as an important plot point. Leroux, who also penned The Phantom of the Opera, was especially skilled at misdirection. 


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Mary J. Blige serenades Hillary Clinton


What the … ?


I have no words.





Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf


I’ve decided to cast my vote for whichever candidate promises to toss this obnoxious prick into prison.




So Trump, who apparently pays no taxes, is proposing tax cuts for everyone.

Does that mean we’ll owe him money?






Night Train to Terror has that intangible quality that separates bad movies from so-bad-it’s-good movies, the sense that someone — director, stars, screenwriter — took the thing seriously, and therefore its majestic awfulness is both tragic and hilarious.

I stopped trying to make sense of this 1985 disaster after ten minutes, and instead sat back and simply let its cheesy special effects, incomprehensible plot, and hapless actors wash over me. Highly recommended.






This is why some people (can’t imagine who) watch the Big Brother live feeds:


.     morgan2    morgan3    morgan4

.     morgan5 morgan6 morgan7

.     morgan8   morgan9   morgan10

.     morgan11 morgan12



                                              Click on pictures for a larger view


We’re sure that Morgan Willett of Texas had no clue that cameras were capturing her front and back when she stripped down to her thong panties because, well … just because.




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